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Pac-12 Confidential

Bud Withers offers an inside look at the Pac-12 Conference and the national college scene.

July 24, 2012 at 10:09 PM

The commish weighs in at media day . . .

Larry Scott, commissioner of the Pac-12 Conference, was an active participant in the league’s football media-day festivities Tuesday in LA, assessing a kingdom he took over three years ago in multiple interviews.

Much of the content had to do with the Pac-12 Networks, which launch Aug. 15. Gary Stevenson, president of Pac-12 Enterprises (the umbrella organization for the networks), conceded that the proceedings are frantic (my word), but said they’d been frantic for some time now.

Scott believes the quality content of the Networks, including some key early football games, will lead Dish and DirecTV to reach agreement with the league. Until then, subscribers to those outlets will go without.

“We’ve got amazing football content; I think we’re going to get it,” Scott said, referring to deals with Dish and DirecTV. “With the caliber of some of the games we’re going to have, a sports distribution (outlet) has got to have it, if you’re serious about looking your consumer in the eyes and saying, ‘We offer you the best of football.’ ”

In other comments, Scott:

— Says he expects some key details to be forthcoming by the end of the year on the newly implemented four-team football playoff coming with the 2014 season. Those would include information on the structure of the selection committee, the revenue-sharing formula and which bowls will be designated as semifinal hosts.

— Indicated the Big Ten, Pac-12 and Tournament of Roses will be in discussions to figure out how many times in the 12-year playoff contract the Rose Bowl will host a semifinal game. The Rose Bowl could host as few as two semis and as many as four.

— Likened the SEC-Big 12 alliance to “newlyweds” who will put on a bowl pitting their champions, while he said the Pac-12-Big Ten hookup equates to “being married for a long time.”

— Envisions a more respected league in football shortly. “I think we’re at a fun time in the history of the conference,” he said, “where we can see what’s happening but the rest of the country hasn’t seen it yet, with the combination of depth at the top and the turnarounds that are going to happen.”

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